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Relationship Problems - How to Stay Together

Relationship problems - how to stay together is still a question for many couples on the brink of collapse.

With the sustained rise in relationship problems splits and divorce still on the rise, couples are still not getting the message of how to stay together. If they keep on doing what they have been doing, then they will keep getting what they away got - more problems! Lets look at what’s happening and what needs to change.

Imagine for a moment what is important to you in your life. What would you miss if it wasn’t there? Home, job, husband, wife, partner, money I’m sure you can list many more.

So what do you do on a regular basis to make sure you keep all of those things?

  • If you have a home I expect you pay the rent or the mortgage each month because if you didn’t you would lose it.
  • If you have a job then if you did not do your best and turn up each day then you would lose that job. What you are doing is applying the right focus to those things to make sure you keep them.

The shocking truth

What would have to happen for you to lose your relationship? The shocking truth is just carry on doing what you’re doing. It’s the best route to disaster. I have read several studies that all point to the same conclusion. Couples do not talk to each other. The reports are suggesting that couples spend on average 20 minutes per week or 3 minutes a day in focused meaningful conversation.

Think back to when you were dating. How much time did you spend in meaningful conversation and focused fun? If your date was 2/3 hours that’s a lot of time and energy spent on you both. So why did you do that?

You did it because you had a goal. That goal was more dates, sex, love, marriage, great feelings, and fun, we all have our own agendas. But the bottom line was you felt great about you, your future and your partner. By dating, you created hope.

Where have your goals gone?

Now ask yourself how exciting does your future look now? If it does not look great and you are now bored you are entering the relationship danger zone. You can also guarantee that if you are feeling bored or unhappy then your partner is too. The less you communicate the worse it gets and before you know it either one of you is dreaming of a different life or an affair is on the horizon. The next step is to blame your partner or the relationship. You will feel resentment of not getting the life you thought you were going to get and this is likely to turn into a lack of respect. Once you get to that stage a break-up is very likely, is that what you really want?

We have nothing to talk about!

Many couples complain that they have nothing to talk about and they are right, they have different jobs roles and lives the common factor they have is live under the same roof so what can they talk about? Kids, money, their day, the grass needs cutting, no wonder they don‘t want to talk.

So what did they discuss when they were first dating? What they talked about then was their future, they created exciting goals, of future dates, weekends away, great nights out. Then these goal progressed to living together getting married, getting rich! Who knows what it was that excited you about your future with your partner but something did. Without goals, there would be no second date or a relationship and you can’t create goals if you don’t talk. Creating an exciting life together is your goal, this is where you start.

You have not lost your love, you have lost your future.

You have not lost your love or your passion you are basically still the same people you both fell in love with, but by not communicating you have both successfully killed the relationship without realising. This is not the fault of the relationship it is the fault of the actions or lack of them.

You have heard people say

“We need to split up because this relationship is going nowhere”.

In translation it means that the couple has not created goals for their future, Therefore neither one can’t see a future so the conclusion is the relationship must be wrong.

Very often this is a cry for help.

What has happened is you have both failed in applying the very thing your relationship needs for it to survive, an exciting future. Create that first and in return you will both create fulfilled lives littered with fantastic memories rather than poor ones you might already have.

Problems like these can lead to greater issues down the road, such as infidelity. If you feel that you are in this stage of the relationship, learn more about how to deal with cheating in a relationship at Are You Cheating.

Start today, sit with your partner, and create a life together. What have you always dreamed of doing both personally and in the relationship? Decide and design the life you both want and then take the steps to achieve that life. Create small steps towards those bigger goals and work together at it.

Now you have lots to talk about and an exciting future of possibilities. In this world of plenty, the opportunities are endless. Get excited together, go, and get the life you know you both deserve.

Fame Audit: Zach Braff

NAME: Zach Braff
AUDIT DATE: September 1, 2004
AGE: 29
OCCUPATION: Actor, writer/director
EXPERIENCE: Star of 1 TV series and 7 movies (including one he wrote and directed) since 1993


Did you know that, in the 2004-05 TV season, NBC will be home to only four (4) sitcoms? The network that has, over the years, been known for such long-running powerhouse series as Cheers, The Facts of Life, Family Ties, The Cosby Show, Night Court, Seinfeld, Frasier, and Friends and yes we realize we're only naming sitcoms that have aired in our lifetimes but we're under thirty-five and we live in the now so just deal with it, will now air but four sitcoms, on two nights. Which means that 25% of the sitcoms on NBC are now Father of the Pride.

Fortunately for NBC, another 25% of their sitcoms is Scrubs. Against all odds, NBC's version of Arrested Development -- smart, weird, single-camera, laugh track-free, critically beloved, stuntcaster of Heather Graham -- is back for its fourth season. Its longevity is kind of miraculous, actually, because it's never gotten spectacular ratings (Good Morning, Miami fared better there, and is now good and dead), and has been shunted around the scedule like a comedy refugee, never allowed to get comfy and grow its audience. But, at least when it was on Tuesdays last season, it had the benefit of Frasier as its lead-in. Now its lead-in is...Father of the Pride. It's just this sort of dicking around that makes us think, now that he's a big shot award-winning auteur, Zach Braff's days on Scrubs are numbered, and the number they are numbered is not large.

Maybe we're wrong. It could very well be that we're giving young Mr. Braff too little credit in suspecting that he may soon start to think his britches are getting too snug for him and shed them, even if they've been a comfortable fit and look really good on him, and it's not as though he had all that many pairs of britches in his closet before these ones happened along.

The analogy having grown rather opaque, let us clarify. Scrubs would be a great gig for any actor. But Braff, alone among its cast, should be very grateful for his luck in getting it, since he is not only the show's star, but the least accomplished actor on staff. Pre-Scrubs, Braff was pretty much a nobody, with roles in several movies we hadn't seen (the Joyce Carol Oates adaptation Getting to Know You, the gay baseball romcom The Broken Hearts Club) and one in a movie we had seen but in which we didn't and still don't remember him (Manhattan Murder Mystery). That an actor of his stature could get cast in a sitcom pilot wasn't especially noteworthy; that he'd land on a winner in his very first try, however, is pretty unusual. (Compare him, for instance, to his AD counterpart Jason Bateman, with the corpses of some eighteen thousand failed sitcoms mouldering in shallow graves in his back yard.)

We had always thought that Braff's portrayal of newbie doctor John "J.D." Dorian was a fortuitous pairing of actor and role, and here is why: J.D. is a big dork. Not in the usual way that people are dorky on TV, where they like comic books but don't own a single article of clothing that didn't come from Urban Outfitters, SETH COHEN, but in a recognizably realistic and hence endearing way. J.D. is inept with women, clumsy and insecure in his job, and very aware of all the aspects of his life in which he is insufficiently cool, since he has a non-dorky best friend in Turk (Donald Faison) to point them out to him. But J.D. is at peace with his dorkiness and generally embraces it, which makes him both familiar and fun to watch. We wouldn't be as charmed by his random flights of fancy if they revolved around Miles Davis instead of the late Fred "Rerun" Berry, or a bass guitar instead of a banjo. We like J.D. because he reminds us of the enthusiastic, unapologetic dork in ourselves (the dork that may have gotten a little too into the parade stylings of a half-assed marching band in a Bensonhurst street fair just a few short days ago). If the actor who played him weren't completely committed to portraying J.D.'s nerdish leanings -- if we ever felt like Braff was winking at us as J.D. geeks out -- we wouldn't believe it when he got excited about the acquisition of cereal-box prizes.

Will Braff be able to portray such a big dork convincingly now that he was too cool for school all over Garden State? Because that movie really made us think Braff wrote, directed, and starred in it all in an effort to demonstrate how much cooler than J.D. he could be. He hand-picked himself a rising, respected indie god (Peter Sarsgaard) to play his best friend. He cast every 21st-century nerd's dream girl (Natalie "Queen Amidala" Portman) to play his love interest. He even chose all the music on the soundtrack, the better to demonstrate that he knows better what the kids are listening to today than are the people at Scrubs with their Colin Hay all the time. Perhaps that's why we weren't so crazy about Garden State -- not just because we find tales of mid-twenties angst kind of tiresome (just quit smoking pot, get a decent job, and tell your crappy parents to fuck off already) or because Natalie Portman stank it up (though she was JUST AWFUL), but because it felt like one big show-offy spectacle from our beloved J.D., trying too hard to prove he could hang with the cool kids. Well, we weren't nearly as moved by his standing on top of a bulldozer screaming into a CG canyon as we were by his getting clotheslined in the hallway by The Janitor. The latter was certainly much less self-conscious.

But we are apparently in the minority; Sundance loved Garden State, and it may yet clean up come awards season. By the way, if you’re wondering what’s been going on with the Sundance Film Festival lately (along with the rest of the inside scoop on hollywood news and gossip), click here. Meanwhile, Scrubs doesn't get nearly the awards consideration it should (Emmy nominations for casting? Bah!), so it's not so inconceivable that he'll quit the show after this year, fail upward for a time, and then slink back to TV in a vastly inferior vehicle.

Surely, Braff has an agent and a manager who are busily telling him now how much more famous and important he is than his co-stars and how much better he could do than Scrubs. But before Braff makes any decisions he will later regret, we have two words for him: Tom Cavanaugh. It's a name that should already be familiar to him, since Cavanaugh has played J.D.'s screw-up of an older brother on the show. Once, Cavanaugh was NBC's comedy It Boy. Then his show got cancelled and he sank out of public view, wishing he still had a Blue Light campaign to fall back on. (Because, you guys, if he'd wanted water, he would have asked for water.) Tom Cavanaugh is Zach Braff's cautionary tale -- his Jacob Marley, ominously shaking his chains from the afterfame.

Zach Braff, do you know the weight and length of the strong coil you bear yourself? Probably not. Not to mention that no space of regret can make amends for one life's opportunity misused! Don't start believing your own hype, Braff. You're not that famous (though you could still get more famous yet), and projects as good as Scrubs aren't really as thick on the ground as you may think.


  • Dorkily cute
  • Playing Woody Allen's child in a movie puts him in an elite group of actors
  • "It's actually just pancake batter and blue house paint."
  • And by that, we mean that we love everyone who ever wrote for, appeared on, or watched Clone High


  • The teeth are a little much
  • His recent spate of press for Garden State has revealed him as a Tom Cruise-style overlaugher
  • Casting Natalie Portman lowered his movie's, and hence his, worth
  • Although the movie was a little smug overall, anyway

Fame Barometer

Current approximate level of fame: Kevin James

Deserved approximate level of fame: David Schwimmer

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

ADHD, abbreviated from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, is characterized by lack of attention, more activity than the normal, capricious nature, or a mixture of any of these symptoms. It is primarily a developmental disorder (occurring during the growth of the child). It has been argued that the disorder may progress into adulthood but the argument reminds debatable (Residual type). Children should be in the normal age of development to be identified as victims of ADHD.

ADHD is classified into 4 types depending upon the observed symptoms

  1. ADD with hyperactivity
  2. ADD without Hyperactivity
  3. Residual Type
  4. Hyperkinetic disorder with Conduct disorder


The risk of ADHD could be hereditary in occurrence but there is no substantial evidence to support the statement. Feeling sad and dejected, insufficient sleep, problems of behavior etc might be similar to ADHD and are often confused. Their occurrence simultaneously along with the disorder is also not uncommon. The disease should be carefully examined by a doctor.

The symptoms of ADD with hyperactivity are categorized into 3 groups for convenience

  1. Distraction or Lack of attention
    • Unable to complete the given tasks.
    • Fidgeting between the partially completed tasks.
    • Not paying attention while being spoken to someone.
    • Easily disturbed by any distraction.
    • Losing material possessions frequently.
    • Often unmindful.
  2. Hyperactivity
    • Capricious
    • Cannot sit in the same place for longer durations.
    • Always moving from one place to another.
    • Talking more than normal.
    • Intervening in the works of other people.
  3. Impulsivity
    • Acts without thinking properly.
    • Unable to wait for his turn.

ADD without hyperactivity is no different from ADHD but it lacks hyperactivity symptoms. The residual Type of the disorder is where the disease continues to progress into adulthood and the patient fails to outgrow all of the symptoms.

Epidemiology of ADHD:

ADHD is the most common neurodevelopmental disorder that has been diagnosed in children ranging from 2-18% of cases. Smoking, drugs, and alcohol during pregnancy are considered risk factors.


  • Slight brain damage.
  • Slow maturation.
  • Genetic factors.
  • Neurotransmitters.
  • Psycho developmental reasons.

Biological factors of the disorder are equally important in the development as the psychological causes of the disease.


ADHD is the most common behavioral disorder caused by children. The incidence of the disease is generally higher in boys than in girls and is prevalent in about 3-5% of school-going children.


According to DSM-IV, for a person to have ADHD they should be diagnosed with

  • Presence of the majority of the above-mentioned symptoms of either group for at least 6 months.
  • Signs of mental damage before the child was 7 years old.
  • Exhibiting such symptoms in more than one place.
  • Clearly observable symptoms at different locations.
  • The symptoms should not be due to any other mental disorder.


ADHD occurrence cannot be predicted, but avoiding smoking, alcohol consumption, and drugs during pregnancy may be useful in most cases. Apart from this, few methods to overcome the problem might be useful.

  • Practicing good habits and proper medical care during pregnancy.
  • Good parenting abilities.
  • Allowing the child to learn before the commencement of schooling by the use of various aids available today like television, quizzes, and games.


1. ADHD management involves treatment with suitable drugs

  • CNS stimulants like Dexamphetamine, Methyl Phenidate (they reduce hyperactivity and lack of concentration)
  • Miscellaneous drugs like Atomoxetine (most used in Adults suffering from ADHD), Clonidine, TCAs, Bupropion, and Lithium Carbonate, etc.

Stimulants should be used primarily and the other drugs are for the people who do not respond enough to the stimulants.

2. Supportive Psychotherapy

This can be very helpful as it provides the encouragement required for the child and it should be used adjunctively with drugs. Visit Estadt Psychological Services for psychotherapy options ranging from one on one therapy to family counseling services.


  • 3-7% of the school-going-children in the US suffer from ADHD.
  • Over 5 million children in the age group of 4-17 years have been confirmed with ADHD as of 2007.
  • 13.2% of boys and 5.6% of girls have ADHD and the incidence is high in the teens than in younger children.

Employee of the Month

Folks, the mystery of life is something foreign to all of us. Who in a perfect world would in their right mind consider having the likes of rising joyboy Dane Cook and voicebox vixen Jessica Simpson headline a mainstream comedy? At least Texan-tongued songbird-turned-actress Jessica Simpson, who’s stacked better than the Library of Congress, provides guilty pleasure eye candy for the masses to appreciate. Casting Simpson is a window-dressing tactic so you do what needs to be done in order to capitalize on potential ticket buyers. But the real question remains unanswered about the soaring popularity of Boston-bred yuckster Dane Cook. Supposedly, Cook is the best-selling stand-up comedian working the rounds today. Personally, his appeal is baffling to say the least. Nevertheless, the filmmakers decided to put this tandem together with their loyal head-scratching followings in hopes of mustering up an infectious, irreverent comedy.

In the super-silly slacker laugher Employee of the Month, director Greg Coolidge (“Sorority Boys”) concocts this dimwitted ditty with all the promised precision of a ripped shopping bag. Carelessly moronic and dissolving, Employee is about as cheekily inspired as purposely spilling a sack full of marbles in front of a retirement home. Colossal in its intended dumbness, Coolidge’s extraneous vehicle is a naughty-minded washout and further reminds us of how unpolished the leads are in the chintzy personas of Simpson and Cook. There’s nothing remotely funny or devilish about this cringe-inducing material that borders on being needlessly crude and contemptible. Employee of the Month wouldn’t even give a fifth grade production about poisoned mushrooms an adequate run for its money. Needlessly pointless, the pesky personalities that roam the store lanes in this lame farce certainly do not deserve a marked down discount for our comedic consideration.

Painfully, Cook mugs his way through this wretched retail romp as Zack, an unmotivated employee at a huge, encompassing Wal-Mart-oriented superstore. Although his shelf-stocking duties don’t require much forethought, Zack is content with winging things and doesn’t mind his fellow co-workers picking up the slack for what he lacks in focusing on his dead end job. So as Zack continues to be stuck in his everyday malaise, he’s simply put on cruise control and embraces his laziness with shameless abandonment.

Enter blonde bombshell Amy (Simpson). She’s the new hot-bodied commodity as the store’s newest cashier. Suddenly, sparks start to ignite for Zack as his weary workplace is finally worth the effort in shaping up his job-related duties. Evidently Zack finds out that in order to capture Amy’s affections, he must be an attentive worker and show some uncharacteristic drive to impress her. You see Amy is only attracted to ambitious sorts and these are the only guys that will romantically draw her carnal interests. So by capturing that “Employee of the Month” title Zack realizes that he has a shot at busting the moves on the delicious dollar-handling diva Amy whose radiance at the cash registers has him going completely batty.

However, there’s a price to pay in order for Zack to scoop Amy and look “productive” in her eyes. Namely, the main obstacle is Vince (Dax Shepard). As the glorified go-getter and current Employee of the Month recipient, Vince is a tough act to follow and very well may be the stiff competition that gives Zack the constant discomfort in conforming to the rules of being a standout worker. Plus, it doesn’t help matters that Zack is sacrificing his friendship with the other co-workers in order to court Amy with his new and improved attitude toward his job performance. Alienating his buddies for the taste of Amy’s yummy lips is something that Zack must co-exist with if he’s to score with his curvaceous co-worker.

Granted that Employee of the Month could have been written with a thick crayon on the back of an empty milk carton. Not only is the direction jumpy and juvenile by Coolidge but he also helped co-write this messy mockery. While utterly interminable in its goofiness, Employee is unforgivable in its mean-spirited mode as well. The racy humor in reference to racial stereotypes (check out Napoleon Dynamite’s Efren (“Vote for Pedro”) Ramirez in another sluggish sidekick Latino lackey role) and the disabled and different (Danny Woodburn as the resident “little person” to smirk at on cue) feels cheap and desperate. And the obligatory physical antics and other drudged-up sight gags as created in the convenient world of consumerism never quite grasps the outrageousness that goes hand-in-hand with pushy purchasers and the slow-burning frustrations of underpaid retailers doing battle on the thankless front lines.

Instinctively, this movie should be clever enough to tap into the underlying tension, trivialities and boredom that was skillfully lampooned in an effective workplace witticism such as Mike Judge’s delightfully droll Office Space. This naturally could have been a half-decent gem of a cynically biting movie that knew how to mine its satirical touch. But Coolidge’s insistence on the tediously scattershot leanings of blue-collar buffoonery marred in cliche-driven idiocy basically strips this disposable romantic comedy of its offbeat sweetness, slickness and soul. The forced laughs in Employee of the Month are monotonously manufactured and are about as craftily salty as a can of stale pretzels in the snack aisle.

As the selected leads headlining this dopey dime-store chuckler, Cook and Simpson’s on-screen union has all the pizzazz of a free coupon for footpads. Cook’s Zack struts around with a Cheshire cat’s grin on his sleazy face while donning a copycat impishness that Steve Guttenberg had perfected during his nostalgic Police Academy movie series heyday. As for Simpson’s Amy, she bops back and forth and strangely seems awkwardly empty-minded as the so-called treasured object of affection. The various supporting players (Harland Williams, Brian George and Andy Dick) are more in tune with the bulk of the wackiness as the colorful co-workers. Occasionally, Dick does grate on the nerves in his turn as a blurry-eyed bespectacled clerk that gets tired fast. Shepard’s overachieving Dax is passable in his prickly skin as Cook/Zack’s eager beaver nemesis but his pomposity feels rather fluffy and standard in its dastardly shell.

Overall, there doesn’t seem to be much to the bargain-basement prices being bandied about in the staggeringly half-hearted Employee of the Month. Perhaps a permanent “Going Out of Sale” sign should be placed on its sliding entrance doors...or the box-office for that matter.

To know what movies are hits and which are flops, check out more in-depth reviews at Hollywood Insider.

Sin City

Walk down the right back alley in Sin City and you can find anything.

In all honesty I had never even heard of Frank Miller until Sin City, the movie, was released. I believe I'm speaking for many people and not just myself when I say that I am glad I did discover this talented writer. Aside from loving the film, I plan on dipping into the illustrated novels written by Frank Miller in the early 90's. I respect that the film was titled Frank Miller's Sin City, but I believe director Robert Rodriguez deserved more credit than he was given.

Although every word, clip, graphic, etc were taken exactly from the comic and original illustrations, it would have never of transpired to film without the imagination and experience of Rodriguez. I do not care for all of his films ie: the Faculty, Spy Kids series (what was that?), I am still a fan of the director and his more popular work. I am a fan of his earlier efforts and now his latest. El Mariachi, Desperado, and the grand daddy of them all...From Dusk Till Dawn; these remain the directors classics, but a successful Once Upon a Time in Mexico paved the way for Sin City.

Skinny little Nancy Callahan. She grew up. She filled out.

Sin City boasts an all star cast. I was really interested to see how all of these A list actors and actresses could work together in a movie and have it succeed. Most star studded movies suck and keeps plot and purpose from developing. This movie is different, firstly I had no idea about three different stories being told. This proved excellent and worked perfectly. Each actor contributed 100% to their character and I still have yet to find any flaws. Sin City was also the first movie to be shot entirely on a digital video camera. I am a true believer in film and 35mm but when it works and goes above and beyond anyone's expectations its worth it. The digital element really enabled Rodriguez to give the film the "comic book" look which he was trying to preserve from the start. Editing and directing didn't put too much emphasis on CGI, yet it is is taste full. I would much rather see puppets, miniatures, and stop motion photography...but this film still was able to bend the rules and I believe it set a standard to how movies will be filmed over the next century. She smells like angels ought to smell.

Bruce Willis proved his skills again in playing the role of Hartigan. Bruce Willis, Die Hard, Pulp Fiction, ultimate bad ass ...after his comedy stint with Matthew Perry in the retarded sequel to that movie I cant even think of its name, I thought his career was over. Not only did he regain my respect through Sin City he also stared in the blockbuster thriller Hostage. Willis played the role to a T and in watching the film you feel sorry for his situation from the start. When judging performances though, the best belongs to Mickey Rourke, the toughest "tough guy" in film today. Hell, they even made him look exactly like the character out of the graphic novel (comic). Critics say that Rourke was able to re-invent himself through this movie and that It will jump start his career. Being a big fan of his I hope that proves to be true. There is so much I say about this film, I really don't want to spoil it for potential viewers who have yet to see it. This movie is not trendy, nor is it glossy Hollywood garbage; It's an illusion of the mind ...something that really fucks with you. This film gets the ultimate approval rating.

Sin City Trivia

  • After a poor Hollywood experience in the early-'90s, Frank Miller refused to relinquish the movie rights to any of his comic works, "Sin City" in particular. Robert Rodriguez, a longtime fan of the comic, filmed his own "audition" for the director's spot in secret. The footage, shot in early 2004, featured Josh Hartnett and 'Marley Shelton' acting out the "Sin City" short-story "The Customer is Always Right". He presented the finished footage to Miller with the proclamation: "If you like this, this will be the opening to the movie. If not, you'll have your own short film to show your friends." Miller approved of the footage and the film was underway. Rodriguez also screened the footage for each of the actors he wanted to cast in the film - all of whom are reported to have been instantly amazed.
  • The cover of the Sin City book "Booze, Broads, and Bullets", can be seen periodically throughout the movie. Its most notable appearance is on the cover of the matchbook that Hartigan picks up to locate Nancy; it is also seen in the background of the strip club in the very next scene as Hartigan first enters (to the right as a poster).
  • Director, 'Robert Rodriguez' , can be seen, wearing his trademark white cowboy hat in Kadie's bar as Hartigan enters when he's looking for Nancy.
  • 'Robert Rodriguez ' originally envisioned 'Johnny Depp ' in the role of Jackie Boy. Due to prior commitments, Depp could not play the part. While at the Academy Awards, Rodriguez saw 'Benicio Del Toro ' with long hair ("Wolf Man" hair, as he describes it) and said that he "was looking at Jackie Boy". He told Del Toro not to cut his hair and mailed him the comic book and a copy of the short, "The Customer is Always Right." Del Toro immediately signed on.

For more interesting movie trivia, click here.

City of God

is the story of two boys growing up in one of the toughest slums in Brazil, where to survive one must live a life of crime and gangsterism.

The award winning film City of God is based on the true story of two boys growing up in a festering slum near Rio de Janeiro in the 1960's and 1970's. Focusing on the lives of two central characters, Rocket (Alexandre Rodrigues) and Ze (Leandro Firmino), reflect the danger and uncontrollable violence that comes from selling drugs and brandishing a gun. Rocket has the ambition to become a photographer and escape the murderous chaos within the slum. In contrast, Ze embraces a life of crime and rises to the top of the criminal hierarchy by killing all of his adversaries. The film begins with a flashback to the late 60's when the City of God was a relatively well organized housing project for the poor and dispossessed people of rural Brazil. Innocence and the harmless pastimes of childhood are lost from the start when Rocket recalls his early years. His older brother is already involved in petty theft and is beyond redemption in the eyes of his family and the police. Ze, even at a young age, displays a frightening pleasure to kill bystanders when robbing a small hotel with Rocket's brother and two other slum dwellers.

The two boys grow up and by the late 1970's armed gangs are in control of the lucrative drug trade that has become the only source of employment in the slum. The City of God has turned into a disaster, the mood of the film is darker, the appearance of the slum is uglier, with corrugated iron and tin shacks that have replaced the well manicured houses from the decade before. And, incredibly young hoodlums show no hesitation to use their handguns when settling disputes. At this stage Rocket is too frail for the gangster lifestyle, but realizes when we takes a menial job that an honest living is also a ticket to nowhere. Ze, on the other hand, is at the top of his trade and like most psychotic criminals is determined to punish all who cross him, regardless of how small the offence.

A glimmer of hope for Rocket becomes visible when he is commissioned by a daily newspaper to provide media coverage of the slum which is exploding with gang warfare. The film assumes a lighter, even amusing air when he has his first sexual experience with a fellow reporter. Although he is raised in the same environment as Ze, he does not allow himself to be swallowed by the endless cycle of violence. Things come to a head by 1980 when a full scale war is underway between the last two gangs, which proves to be fatal for Ze who is gunned down at the film's end. It's hard not to feel sympathy for him, a boy who probably didn't have any other choices in his life and also failed to see that a better life is possible.

Brilliant performances all around make for a evening of gripping entertainment. The cast, who are non-professional actors, were hand picked by the director Fernando Meirelles and the dialogue was almost entirely improvised. Taking a tour of a "favela" or slum that cover the hillsides around Rio de Janeiro are now possible, and conditions are improving, slowly. More and more houses are constructed with brick, and there are health care centres and schools. To truly understand the gap between the rich and poor in Brazil, visit Rocinha, Rio's largest favela with 500,000 residents.

Check out more of the best movies reviews and Hollywood entertainment news at Hollywood Insider.


You may not like what you read here. You may feel this is all just science fiction. Or in fact, you are simply not willing to believe that the American government does such things. If you are timid and live by the saying that 'ignorance is bliss' turn back now because this site is not for you.

It is, however, for those who are quenching for truth that is not satisfied by conventional media, not afraid of what they might find or may not find, or to discover what their governments are doing. I have built this low-tech site in order to pave the way for a new awareness, to start your journey in the search for truth, to question everything that we take for granted around us, and more importantly, to prepare you for the uncomfortable realities that truth brings.

From the West Nile Virus Conspiracy to the Highway Construction Conspiracy, Conspiracy News Now reports lesser known conspiracies, or provides you with a different angle to conspiracies you may already have heard of.

I attempt to report them to you in the most objective way possible and in the most readable fashion. Accordingly, I have taken out graphs, pictures, documents, and source listings and given you instead sufficient fodder to become aware of the issues raised by the conspiracies reported in order to pave the way for your further research, either on the internet, local library or hopefully, your neighborhood.

Email me if you have any questions or comments, or if you need further roads to follow. Otherwise, good luck in your journey...

Dock West


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